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Merger of our two trusts approved

Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and The Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust will merge. This follows approval by both trusts boards of directors and councils of governors on Tuesday 15 September. NHS England and Improvement will issue the legal orders this Friday to authorise that the two trusts will join on Thursday 1 October to create University Hospitals Dorset NHS Foundation Trust.

Debbie Fleming, joint Chief Executive said: "This is fantastic news. We are delighted that this is happening as we believe our merger will help our three hospitals to provide even better care, and develop world-class services as we become a university hospital trust working with Bournemouth University. Our new organisation will allow us to work better together to tackle Covid-19 and realise our ambitious plans for the future."

"We appreciate there will be a lot of work to be done to bring our trusts together and this will go along side our capital plans and the reconfiguration of services but much of this is well underway and is progressing well. Our organisation development programme centres around developing a shared set of values and creating a strong positive culture together, and we have an ambitious three year plan for taking this forwards."

NHS England and Improvement completed their review of the merger last week and wrote that they were satisfied that it will enable quicker decision-making and implementation of change, which will speed up the benefits of the reconfiguration. They also wrote that the two trusts are well placed to provide substantial improvements for patients - both as a result of bringing our services and teams together and through reconfiguration of our services.

David Moss, joint Chairman said: "We thank all our partners, including Dorset Healthcare, Dorset County Hospital, our local councils, South Western Ambulance Service and the Dorset CCG. We look forward to continuing to work closely together as part of the Our Dorset Integrated Care System to realise the full benefits of our merger and our bright future together as University Hospitals Dorset."